Preschoolers love clowns and circus-themed activities.

Preschool Activities Using the Circus Theme

by Tania K. Cowling

Step right up and bring the magic of the circus to your home. Your little ones may act kooky at times, but having a big top celebration gives them the opportunity to be real clowns and circus performers for the day. Plan activities that are fun and also educational as you role-play trapeze artists and the ringmaster and portray animal acts that are synonymous of the greatest show on earth.

1. The Ringmaster Says

Invite your little party animal (along with some friends) to do some circus stunts, taking turns to be the ringmaster who calls out the orders. Set a place in your yard where the children can jump through hoops, leap over a rope, duck under a pole and step through tires along with other obstacles while behaving like circus animals, such as elephants, bears and lions.

2. Paint a Clown’s Face

A clown's primary role at the circus is to make sure everyone keeps laughing. This sure isn’t hard for a preschooler. To stay authentic in this role your child needs clown face makeup. Make safe non-toxic face paint for your youngster and his friends by mixing two tablespoons of cold cream or shortening with five teaspoons cornstarch, one tablespoon of flour and a small amount of petroleum jelly in a bowl. Make several batches and add food coloring to make a variety of colors. Use cotton swabs to paint flowers, butterflies and pretty designs on your little clown’s face. You may even want to paint a red nose!

3. Make a Circus Wagon

Glue several animal cracker cookies to a rectangle of construction paper. Cut strips from a black sheet of paper and glue these spaced evenly onto the circus animal wagon to form bars that enclose the animals inside the cage. Glue two metal bottle caps or wagon-wheel shaped pasta pieces for the cage’s bottom wheels. Don’t forget to provide a dish of animal cookies for your little artist to snack on, too!

4. Open Animal-Faced Sandwiches

Make lunch fantastic with this edible art project. Invite the kiddies to make circus animal sandwiches from healthy ingredients in the kitchen. Start with bread cut into circles and placed onto a plate. To make a lion, lay a circle of luncheon meat on the bread. Place a square of cheese for his snout and raisins for eyes. Encircle the lunchmeat with shredded cheddar cheese for its mane. If your preschooler is fond of elephants, place your circle of meat on the bread with a leaf of lettuce on both sides for ears. Use two pitted black olives for eyes and a small stalk of celery for its long trunk.

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